Updated date:

Top 10 Superweapons in Star Wars

Jeremy hopes the Force is with him as he pursues a forensics career in the swamps of Louisiana.

What Are Superweapons in Star Wars?

Superweapons lack a concrete definition, but are generally enormously-powerful constructs that destroy entire continents, planets, or even star systems. And throughout millennia of Star Wars lore spanning films, novel, video games, and more, we've encountered dozens of terrifying apocalypse-causing death machines.

Varying in size, range, and stability, some superweapons tower above the rest. Here are the ten strongest doomsday devices in the galaxy far far away! Spoilers ahead, though I'll try to keep them to a minimum.

The Death Star's superlaser

The Death Star's superlaser

10. The Death Stars

Function: Planet-Destroying Laser
Built by: Galactic Empire

The most well-known superweapons, both of the Empire's Death Stars were ultimately destroyed by the Rebel Alliance, but their ability to fire planet-destroying lasers made them dominant military forces.

The second Death Star was even more deadly than the first, as its laser only took a few minutes (as opposed to an entire day) to recharge and could target capital ships in addition to planets. It also removed the thermal exhaust weakness, requiring the Rebels to traverse the machine's innards to destroy its central power core.

The Star Forge in KOTOR

The Star Forge in KOTOR

9. Star Forge

Function: Infinite Ship-Building Factory
Built by: Rakatan Empire

Constructed thousands of years before the Republic's formation, the Star Forge itself doesn't wield catastrophic lasers or bombs—but it creates spaceships that do. By combining Force energies with matter from nearby stars, the Forge could create a limitless supply of ships, droids, and other war-related resources.

Used by Darth Revan and Darth Malak in fan-favorite video game Knights of the Old Republic, the Star Forge remains a mysterious semi-sentient entity even today. Thankfully, if combated before churning out enough spacecraft, it can be defeated by an adequately-large fleet.

A World Devastator in Star Wars

A World Devastator in Star Wars

8. World Devastator

Function: Planet-Destroying, Ship-Building
Built by: Galactic Empire

As destructive as the Empire was, even Palpatine and Vader realized that blowing up a planet removes the potential for exploiting its exports. Thus, World Devastators were designed, allowing the Empire to break planets using powerful tractor beams while harvesting their natural resources.

In a similar nature to the Star Forge, the Devastator would use the deconstructed land to power itself as well as starfighters and droids. Devastators would even upgrade themselves in unique ways, making no two alike, and their impressive shields could withstand even concentrated turbolaser blasts. The Rebels only managed to destroy these weapons thanks to a virus created by R2-D2, who had received Imperial data from an undercover Luke Skywalker.

An Infinity Wave in Star Wars

An Infinity Wave in Star Wars

7. Infinity Gate

Function: Planet-Destroying Wave and Instant Transportation
Built by: The Kwa species

During pre-Republic times, the aliens Kra developed a network of monuments that provide instantaneous travel between two locations. Using "the power of the cosmos" (the Force), these structures could both transport objects and project formidable Infinity Waves that suck their targets into infinity, effectively destroying all matter within.

Infinity Waves are powerful enough to destroy entire planets, can erupt from numerous locations, and render an impacted area immune to hyperspace navigation, granting long-term consequences. Beyond, you know, planet annihilation.

The Galaxy Gun in Star Wars

The Galaxy Gun in Star Wars

6. Galaxy Gun

Function: Planet-Destroying Nukes
Built by: Galactic Empire

In an infamous Legends (alternative timeline) story, the Emperor is reborn into a newer and younger body a few years after Episode 6, taking command of the Empire's fragmented forces. With superior technology, he commissioned both World Devastators and the Galaxy Gun, a superweapon that launched "particle disintegrator warheads" capable of destroying entire planets. And since these warheads had hyperdrives, the Gun could fire at distant targets, allowing it to wreak havok from the safety of an Imperial fortress.

Equipped with powerful hyperdrives and defensive turbolasers, the Guns were surprisingly mobile and well-shielded forces that could stave off nearly any enemy assault; it took R2-D2 ramming a massive Super Star Destroyer into it to eliminate the weapon.

Resonance Torpedo Launcher

Resonance Torpedo Launcher

5. Resonance Torpedo Launcher

Function: System-Destroying Torpedos
Built by: Galactic Empire

Little is known about the RTL project, but these projectiles were designed to target star systems. Impact would initiate a supernova, wiping out not just the star but all orbiting planets as well.

In real-world terms, imagine a weapon blowing up the sun, then spreading the explosion to any neighboring planets and moons—like Earth. That's what the Torpedo Launcher would do, and though it was never used, its technology helped build the Sun Crusher, which we'll soon see.

Centerpoint Station Star Wars

Centerpoint Station Star Wars

4. Centerpoint Station

Function: System-Destroying Tractor Beams
Built by: Celestials

Possibly built by mysterious and ancient Celestials (through their Killik workers), this massive hulk eclipses both Death Stars in size. Centerpoint's formidable tractor beams can both move and obliterate planets and stars through enormous gravitational beams.

The craft's sheer size fortified it against enemy fire, and its substantial range and precision allowed it to target individual fighters, even at a distance. Like the Infinity Gate, the only thing that proved capable of Destroying Centerpoint was Centerpoint itself; a successful sabotage caused it to fire inward.

Starkiller Base firing in The Force Awakens

Starkiller Base firing in The Force Awakens

3. Starkiller Base

Function: System-Destroying Laser
Built by: First Order

Unlike many of today's Legend weapons, Starkiller Base belongs to the official continuity, seen in Episode 7: The Force Awakens. Starkiller was a mobile ice planet whose dark energy-enfused crystals allowed it to power an enormous blast capable of destroying entire systems at range.

Precise targeting allowed for concentrated fire if needed; in Episode 7, the station destroyed New Republic capital Hosnian Prime and several neighboring planets, eliminating most of the Republic's fleet. Thankfully, the Resistance was housed elsewhere and conducted a desperate yet ultimately successful counterattack, exploiting the base's weakness (its thermal oscillator was vulnerable when fully charged).

The Sun Crusher in Star Wars

The Sun Crusher in Star Wars

2. Sun Crusher

Function: System-Destroying Torpedoes
Built by: Galactic Empire

Using technology from Resonance Torpedo Launchers, the Sun Crusher could destroy entire systems by inducing a supernova in a targeted star. The Crusher was only the size of a regular starfighter, but was amazingly sturdy—it sustained only minor damage from a Death Star prototype's superlaser and rammed a Star Destroyer's hull with nary a scratch.

Under the control of revenge-obsessed Jedi initiate Kyp Durron, the Crusher destroyed the entire Cauldron Nebula in hopes of eliminating remaining Imperial forces, though it's ultimately destroyed by a black hole. A relief to the New Republic at the time, though Luke later comments how a few more superweapons would have proved useful during the Yuuzhan Vong invasion.

The Shawken Device's blast in Star Wars (imagining)

The Shawken Device's blast in Star Wars (imagining)

1. Shawken Device

Function: Universe-Destroying Blast
Built by: A Shawkenese scientist

The Shawken Device was the ultimate power in the galaxy—sort of. Designed by an ancient and nihilistic scientist from planet Shawken, the machine could supposedly obliterate not just a planet or system, but the entire universe.

Thus its use as a weapon is limited, as any activation would destroy its users. Still, it was activated shortly after Episode 6, though Luke manages to shut down the machine, noting he wasn't sure if the device was a fraud or if it simply needed time to charge. Even if authentic, it's essentially a military-worthless suicide machine, but in terms of raw firepower, the Shawken is the ultimate force in Star Wars.

More Superweapons in Star Wars

Even a fanatic like myself was surprised by the sheer volume of superweapons in Star Wars; in addition to today's list, objects like the Mass Shadow Generator, Sun Razer, and Darkstaff have terrorized the galaxy, making it a wonder it's intact at all.

Thankfully, ancient and modern Jedi alike are there to thwart these malicious forces, but not always before their payloads unleash, losing crucial planets like Alderaan and Hosnian Prime. We'll see what chaos mankind wreaks in upcoming space adventures, but for now, as we wait the next episode in the Star Wars saga, vote for your favorite weapon and I'll see you at our next Star Wars countdown!

© 2019 Jeremy Gill

Comments

corgisdie on September 12, 2019:

I'm almost glad that the Sun Crusher was destroyed... almost. In all honesty I'd love to operate one of those bad boys. Pint-sized, virtually indestructible, and could one-shot entire star systems. Basically, it was a trump card, if the trump card flipped the table over and shot the other player.

Larry Slawson from North Carolina on April 12, 2019:

Nice list. I had forgot about the Star Forge until now. I have the sudden urge to go back and play Knights of the Old Republic now haha.

Liz Westwood from UK on April 12, 2019:

That's the wonder and attraction of the Star Wars franchise. Imagination knows no bounds. These weapons are examples of how creativity is given full reign on this platform.